Dandruff or dry skin on head? What works?

(34 Posts)
Trillz Fri 19-Apr-13 08:41:59

I have dandruff. Or a dry scalp. One or the other. I'm not even sure if they are different.

I don't know if I want to get out the Head and Shoulders (which I have heard is very harsh) or if I need to somehow moisturise my head better.

Any thoughts or suggestions?

MasterOfTheYoniverse Fri 19-Apr-13 08:50:32

Are you sure its not eczema or psoriasis? In which case will be too harsh.

Worth trying a mild shampoo with no parabens, no sulfates etc...

Not sure wether you can find the " ducray" range in boots ( a french pharma brand). They have a very efficient calming scalp leave in lotion if its itchy and sore.

Also it goes without saying, make sure you rinse your shampoo very toroughly.

Pinkflipflop Fri 19-Apr-13 08:51:44

Google MooGoo products and they also so a scalp cream.

Chocoflump Fri 19-Apr-13 08:53:49

Head and shoulders causes my hair to fall out!

There's a great shampoo called T Gel. Works for me smile

Trillz Fri 19-Apr-13 08:53:58

It's not itchy or sore. I don't feel anything. I just have small white flakes. But they are annoying.

I have always had "dry hair" (which I think equates to my head not making much oil, so the skin on my head will be dry) - my hair doesn't get greasy.

adagio Fri 19-Apr-13 09:10:47

I'm breastfeeding at the moment and the pharmacist in boots suggested I try rubbing olive oil into scalp, leave overnight and wash out in the morning.
Not tried it yet though as scared of the resulting oil slick (lengthy rinsing with a wailing baby the other side of the shower curtain sounds headache inducing…)

I can't use T Gel due to nursing (coal tar can make your milk taste grim apparently).

I can reliably inform you that head and shoulders, body shop ginger, and Lush shampoo bar with rosemary haven't made any difference for me though! As with you, I think it is more 'dry scalp' than dandruff as such, I did shove E45 cream on the hairline and that fixed that bit for a while (but I don't think thats an option for all over)

I am tempted to try E45 shampoo but TBH this is getting expensive, nothing actually seems to work, and I am guessing its a hormonal thing being as I never had this problem until I got pregnant last year. If you do find something that helps can you report back please? Thanks :-)

GeordieCherry Fri 19-Apr-13 09:14:00

I'm 35 weeks pg. intending to bf. Should I stop using T gel?? I usually use it once or twice a week & Naked on the other days...

adagio Fri 19-Apr-13 09:20:01

Well to be honest, I simply haven't risked trying it - the T gel bottle (the medical coal tar one not the salicylic acid one) said not to use it so I googled why and they seem think it might make the milk taste rank, no particular harm as such - I don't particularly want to risk trying it and annoying the baby (I get little enough sleep as it is!)

Have a google yourself and make your own mind up, I would suspect though that if you used it from the get go your child may just think thats your 'flavour' and it would be more of an issue to introduce at three months!

I asked my GP and he said it was fine, its Dr Google and the bottle which said don't...

Trillz Fri 19-Apr-13 09:25:46

I had a friend who moved to New York and whenever anyone visited the one thing he wanted brought over was coal tar soap.

I think I am going to go for the "moisturise my head" route rather than the "medicated shampoo that will upset my skin more" route. It's funny because the skin on my face is very easy-going and rarely gives me any trouble.

bran Fri 19-Apr-13 09:26:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

teta Fri 19-Apr-13 09:30:12

I get a really dry itchy scalp from time to time and use Eucerin shampoo.Its very soothing and moisturising and is especially for psoriasis and other skin conditions.

MrsJaqenHgar Fri 19-Apr-13 09:34:00

Aveda Shampure with the occasional use of T-Gel. I have eczema which makes my scalp flaky. Occasionally, I'll get full on flare ups of broken, it h skin which can be cleared up with T-Gel. The rest of the time, Aveda Shampure keeps my scalp in good condition.

If it is dandruff, then moisturising will only make it worse.

I had an itchy, flakey scalp for over 20 years and tried pretty much every dandruff shampoo, none of which worked. So I thought it must be dry skin instead and over moisturised my scalp. It just got worse. Colouring my hair brought relief but only short-term.

A year ago I happened to read in a magazine that dandruff is actually caused by a fungus that is attracted to an oily scalp, feeding off the oils <boak>, and making the scalp dry, flakey and itchy. The magazine recommended Nizoral shampoo, which I bought the next day. After the initial use for 2 - 4 weeks, I now use it once or twice every month. Sometimes I forget to use it and only remember when my scalp becomes itchy again. The bottle is only 60mls but have it a year and still about a 1/4 left. First shampoo to work on me. No horrible flakes on my shoulder, no scratching my head so hard that it bleeds.

I was really blush at having a fungal infection on my head but also angry that it took me 20 years to find out. Turns out that I am prone to fungal infections due to hypothroidism.

HTH and good look with finding a solution.

Trillz Fri 19-Apr-13 10:02:02

Ah - so there is a difference between dandruff and just dry skin. Thanks! I was never sure if it was a real "thing" or just a special word for "flaky scalp". smile

I promise that I do not have an oily scalp. My hair never gets greasy or oily. Oily scalp is definitely not me. So it's unlikely that I have a fungal infection that likes oil.

TheHuffAndPuffALot Fri 19-Apr-13 10:08:36

It might just be that you need to be drinking more water, at least this is what my hairdresser recommended to me when she commented on my dry scalp.

Scoobyblue Fri 19-Apr-13 10:10:25

T gel is fab. Works every time.

I'd second Nizoral - its fabulous! I'm also hypothyroid.

But it doesnt sound appropriate in this case - I'd recommend Eucerin

ArtexMonkey Fri 19-Apr-13 10:18:17

My dh has this and nothing works, even t gel, the only thing that sorts him is selsun shampoo for sebhorreic dermatitis, it has selenium in it. He's had to get it off amazon lately though, for some reason it's out of stock in pharmacies everywhere ATM, they all say it's a supplier problem confused

Another saying head and shoulders doesn't work for me - but i've been really impressed with the results from the Loreal anti-dandruff shampoo (which I didn't even know existed) - and it's often pretty cheap in supermarkets. It's a blue bottle, if you choose to try it!

orangeandlemons Fri 19-Apr-13 10:26:09

T gel or Nizarol. It is increasingly thought that dandruff is a fungus. I had what I thought was a dry scalp. Itchy flaky, felt tight etc. turned out it was sebhorric dermatitis. However I have to say although the 2 shampoos kicked it into touch, they are not very good on the old hair. Make it very flyaway

NotAQueef Fri 19-Apr-13 10:29:29

Bodyshop ginger shampoo
honestly - it's amazing, check out the reviews.
I've been using it for a few weeks now and the dry sore flaky scalp I've been suffering with all winter is gone!

If it is dandruff then neither your scalp nor your hair will be oily, but dry instead. That's because the fungal infection is feeding off it <shudders>. My hair only became oily after the Nizoral started working. I always had dry hair and could have gone a week without washing (didn't, honest, swear smile). It's not as oily now and seems to have balanced itself out. Oh, and I use Johnson's Baby shampoo now which is nice and gentle.

Trillz Fri 19-Apr-13 10:38:47

My hair and scalp never have been oily. Ever. I've always had dry hair. I haven't just had a baby or changed contraceptive or done anything to change my hormones so there's no reason why I would suddenly have started making oil and then gained a fungus.

I would try an apple cider vinegar rinse before washing - 1 part cider vinegar to two parts water, let is soak into your hair for about 5 mins, and then shampoo/condition as normal.

I use faith in nature shampoo it is free of SLS, there is a good range of types, they are reasonably priced, Oxfam sell them but I get them from local independent health food type shops.

The cider vinegar really makes a difference to my scalp/hair without the oil slick from olive oil - I would use it once a week, then once a fortnight, then monthly to keep my hair lovely and shiny.

Trillz Fri 19-Apr-13 11:06:31

No SLS sounds like a good suggestion no matter what my problem is smile

What do you do with the cider vinegar?

From the descriptions of dandruff here I really don't think that's what I have.

Thanks all for your suggestions/recommendations.

I use the cider vinegar as a scalp tonic/ hair rinse before washing my hair - not sure what it does but it seems to rebalance my hair/scalp so if it is feeling dry it sorts that out, but if I have a build up of grease/oil it seems to work on that too - I haven't had oily hair for years though, tends to be dry and the cider vinegar rinse makes my hair feel soft and glossy. I use this one.

orangeandlemons Fri 19-Apr-13 11:21:19

But my hair, skin and scalp are very dry too. But I still get the fungus shit

Trillz Fri 19-Apr-13 11:29:26

So how do you tell if you have a dry scalp or fungus? What's the distinguishing feature?

NotAQueef Fri 19-Apr-13 11:42:57

I have no clue. I decided mine was dry scalp, but the ginger shampoo I linked to treats both and smells nice too (won't leave you with a stained scalp like some treatment shampoos.) mine seemed to get really bad after I had been using pantene for the first time in years.
You only need a tiny amount.

VillaVillekulla Fri 19-Apr-13 12:26:48

I agree with the Apple Cider Vinegar recommendation and also try using coconut oil. Melt it, massage it into your scalp. Leave it on overnight. Wash out in the morning.

fruitscone Fri 19-Apr-13 13:47:13

Just to echo other posters:

BODY SHOP GINGER SHAMPOO

I put a similar q on here last year and so many people recommended it. I had proper scabs over my head and it was spreading. I had tried some medicated shampoo from chemist to no avail, then got some coal tar and body shop ginger. I think it was the body shop ginger stuff that really shifted it and now I use it when I got swimming and it seems to keep it at bay. Smells lovely too.

valiumredhead Fri 19-Apr-13 15:55:51

YY Body Shop Ginger

OR

L'Oreal anti dandruff - dark blue bottle and orange lid - available in Boots.

Trill Mon 22-Apr-13 22:06:20

Terribly exciting update: I have bought some Body Shop Ginger shampoo

NotAQueef Tue 23-Apr-13 10:14:45

Report back in a week Trill and I'm sure you will already see an improvement!

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